writing

More on medieval, medievalist, #medievaltwitter #MLA2019 calls for papers: some deadlines have passed, some loom this week!

78C8DCE9-01B8-4E11-872C-45AE79294850
(more…)

Make the essay Montaignian again (2)

This started out as a short post about worrying. It is dedicated to my FREN 220 students who will be sitting their final exam next week, to other students preparing for and sitting exams (notwithstanding amusing attempts to undermine our exam season), and to students more generally. You are why faculty are here. And we are here for you. We worry. We want to help: in respectful support.

IMG_9643

(more…)

Make Essays Montaignian Again


Image credit: Antony Gormley
(TW: includes cannibals, zombies, bilingualism, and other monsters.)
(more…)

Qu’est-ce que le commentaire ?

[Une version, adaptée aux besoins d’un cours sur la bande dessinée (Université de la Colombie-Britannique Vancouver), de plusieurs guides pratiques pour l’analyse textuelle. Une version plus générale en anglais se trouve ici. / This is a shorter French version of “On reading, writing, and commentary,” for a UBC Vancouver course.]  (more…)

On reading, writing, & commentary

PROLOGUE

The original title of this piece is “Criticism & commentary,” but it’s really about reading and writing as harmoniously-integrated activities within the larger whole that is a literary continuum and polyphonic collective; uniting all participants in a living textual network.

Premises and provisos: It views commentary as one of the core and ancient literary/communicative forms, along with story-telling and translation; with story-telling as the living beating heart of this human trinity of curiosity, criticism, and creativity.

It uses literature in its broad sense to extend to “any object that can be read, seen, interpreted” and reading in the broad / Barthes sense to include perception by any of the senses, with “making sense of” as its purpose, and an interpretation translated into expression via any of the senses.  This piece sees literature as synonymous with communicative expression. Not as one kind of communication, but the other way around:  what passes in other (non-literary) fields as “communication” is a more or less appropriately human, or humanly-appropriate, kind of literature. All writing has a right, duty, and responsibility to be beautiful, imaginative and innovative, and critical and creative. All writing can and should be literature. 

The present version is that used in MDVL 302: European Literature of the 14th to the 16th centuries – “Criticism” (UBC, Faculty of Arts, Medieval Studies Programme, Spring 2012) and MDVL 301A : European Literature of the 5th to the 14th centuries – “The Liberal Arts” (Fall 2016). It’s one of the oldest pieces on this present blog; its most ancient archaeological layer (writing resources) is from a now-deceased previous site, “The Rose of the Romance” (2003).

img_6757

“The tree of life”
Gua Tewet, Borneo
(c. 10,000 years ago)

(more…)